Online bridge update 52

The Tuesday morning supervised play session will be running as normal again this week (27th April), starting at the normal time of 9.30am. As usual, please let me know as early possible that you intend to join, ideally by early Monday evening as it makes it so much easier to arrange the tables and reduce the risk of having to turn one of you away. The maximum number we can currently handle is 16 and that has been working very well recently. We have been experimenting with groups of 8 playing the hands as team matches.

Tuesday supervised play

27th April 2021 from 9.30am


There is no seminar tomorrow, as I have to go to an important business meeting in London, but I continue with the recording of a video summarising all the hands from the most recent seminar, which described the hands I played in a recent online pairs event at Oxford Bridge Club. Watching a video has the advantage of allowing you to stop and start at your own convenience when following the hands. More details as soon as there are details to give.

This was an exciting hand from a teams event I played in last week. These are the four hands.

The numbers to the right show how many tricks could be made by both sides given perfect knowledge.

At my table the bidding went as follows:

The challenge playing in 6H (doubled but not vulnerable) was how to play the heart suit after a low spade lead. You can trump that and lead a heart towards the AQ, knowing that if it works you can later discard all but one of your losers on the clubs in dummy, making 12 tricks. But when East follows with the 9, should you finesse or play the Ace hoping for the King to be singleton?

There were a lot of points and imps riding on the outcome. Other things being equal the odds marginally favour playing for the King to be singleton (52% vs 48%, but when the bidding is as competitive as this other factors come into play. Do you think for example East West would be more or less inclined to bid on to 6S if one of them had a void in hearts? What would you have done?

There is no simple answer to this question but what I can say is that my team got it wrong at both tables, making 6Hx at one table, and failing to defeat it at the other (a diamond lead gives declarer no chance whatever the situation is in hearts), resulting in a loss of 17 imps. Fortunately we were ahead by a large margin on the other hands, so still won, but this one hand took the shine off what would otherwise have been a massive victory…..Such is bridge!


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